Note: This review was originally published at Red Adept Reviews on August 11, 2011.
Overall: 4 stars
At the very least, "Mewsings: My Life as a Jewish Cat" has to be one of the quirkiest books I've read. Consider that:
1. It's written by a female calico cat named Ketzel.
2. Ketzel is an Orthodox Jewish cat who's fluent in Yiddish.
3. It's a collection of poems, or at least, rhyming lines.
Mewsings was actually a mostly humorous, sometimes poignant, look at the world from a cat's point of view. Ketzel was a good Jew, but those days of fasting could be so inconvenient!
On the fasting required for the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur):
In all truth I must say
On this day
I wish I were a stray
Or even a fat homely pigeon
Belonging to another religion
And on matzo balls for Passover:
She makes my favorite: matzo ball soup
(A definite winner I believe in any group)
She adds fat and water and enough matzo meal
Melding soft, gushy matzo balls with considerable zeal
As opposed to last year's disaster
Opening a can, those little balls came out as hard as plaster
Ketzel travels a lot, at least for a cat:
Mamma's a good writer who travels the world
And takes me with because I'm her little girl
She transports me in a peek-a-boo bag on the plane
Sedated, I arrive at our destination feeling no pain
Mewsings may not have been great literature, but the rhyming stories were cute and humorous, and I enjoyed reading them.
There were a few Yiddish words that my Kindle's built-in dictionary didn't recognize, but the author included a useful glossary at the end of the book.
"Mewsings: My Life as a Jewish Cat" has 489 Kindle locations. It's a short book, less than an hour to digest for most readers. Text-to-speech and lending are enabled.